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WBKR Pioneer Douglas Hamby Passes Away at 80

Douglas Hamby, WBKR founding father and former WOMI General Manager

WBKR has lost one of its founding fathers.  We received news this morning that Douglas Hamby, who served as General Manager of WOMI and helped create WBKR-FM, passed away Sunday at Owensboro Medical Health System.  Not only was Douglas a U.S. Navy Veteran of the Korean War, he was a leader in the field of broadcasting and all of us here at WBKR owe our careers, at least in some part, to him. 

Douglas Hamby had many accomplishments in his professional career.  In addition to serving as the General Manager for WOMI, he was instrumental in the creation of WBKR-FM.  He also co-owned WHRZ in Webster and Hopkins Counties and he managed WKWC on the campus of Kentucky Wesleyan College.  His most impressive accomplishment in broadcasting came when he served as the President of the Kentucky Broadcasters Association.

Douglas is survived by his wife of 59 years, Carolyn S. “Kay” Hamby; a daughter, Pam Legate (Perry) of Owensboro; a son, Mark Douglas of Dixon, KY; grandchildren, Brian Hamby (Ashley), Mark Hamby, (Ashley), Angel Kenslow (Ken), Michelle and Joshua Legate and great grandchildren, Eli, Logan, Morgan, Mattie and Mallory Hamby.

His funeral service will be held at 2:00 PM on Tuesday, April 24, 2012 at Glenn Funeral Home and Crematory here in Owensboro and his burial will take place at Pleasant Grove Cemetery. Visitation will be on Tuesday from 11:00 AM until the time of service at the funeral home.

In lieu of flowers memorial contributions may be made to the American Cancer Society 1302 Frederica Street Owensboro, KY 42301. 

As you can see, Douglas’ civic-mindedness carries on even in his passing.  It’s quite fitting and poignant that memorial contributions are made to the American Cancer Society.  WBKR, the station that Douglas helped create, is the primary and award-winning media sponsor for ACS’s signature fundraising events, Relay For Life and Making Strides.  I suppose, in a way, this has all come full circle.

Thank you, Douglas Hamby, for your contributions to your community and the field of radio.  Your successors here at WBKR are grateful for everything you did for the Owensboro-Daviess County, the industry and for us.

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